22 NYCRR 100.3(A); 100.4(C)(3);
Opinion 88-100 (Vol. II).
A judge who is currently serving as a member of the Board of Directors of a County Bar Association inquires whether it is permissible to serve on the Board of Directors of the Assigned Counsel Program, Inc., an organization created by the Bar Association to address assigned counsel matters. If so, the judge inquires as to whether service on both boards simultaneously is permissible. The purpose of the Assigned Counsel Program, Inc., is to provide legal assistance and representation to eligible persons charged with criminal activity. The judge is presently assigned to a criminal court.
Section 100.4(C)(3) of the Rules Governing Judicial Conduct provides:
A judge may be a member or serve as an officer, director,
trustee or non-legal advisor of an organization or governmental
agency devoted to the improvement of the law, the legal system
or the administration of justice ...
This Committee has previously advised that a judge's service as a member or officer in a bar association is to be encouraged. See Opinion 88-100 (Vol. II). Thus, the judge may serve as a member of the Board of Directors of both organizations. However, we note that the judicial duties of a judge take precedence over all the judge's other activities. 22 NYCRR 100.3(A).